The Inhumans and Other Stories
A Selection of Bengali Science Fiction
188 pp., 5 x 8 in, 0 b&w illus.
- Published: March 12, 2024
- Publisher: The MIT Press
The first English translation of a cult science fiction favorite by Hemendra Kumar Roy, one of the giants of early Bangla literature, and other sf stories from the colonial period in India.
Kalpavigyan—science fiction written to excite Bengali speakers about science, as well as to persuade them to evolve beyond the limitations of religion, caste, and class—became popular in the early years of the twentieth century. Translated into English for the first time, in this collection you'll discover The Inhumans (1935), Hemendrakumar Roy's satirical novella about a lost race of Bengali supermen in Uganda. Also included are Jagadananda Ray's “Voyage to Venus” (1895), Nanigopal Majumdar's “The Mystery of the Giant” (1931), and Manoranjan Bhattacharya's “The Martian Purana” (1931).
“The Inhumans represented a genuine moment of science fiction's arrival in interwar Bengal—a region caught up in the brutality of imperial backlash against accelerating waves of enlightened self-determination.”
Anindita Banerjee, author of Science Fiction Circuits of the South and East
“This anthology of Bengali science fiction captures the timelessness of human speculation. The stories explore and interrogate many of the same questions we have today, and Chattopadhyay's translation perfectly evokes the language of the Radium Era.”
S. B. Divya, Hugo- and Nebula-nominated author of Machinehood